Java Developer's Guide to Web Hosting
A Java Developer's Guide to Web Hosting
You look around for hosting providers, and all you see is PHP
and PERL support, with very few hosting companies supporting Java,
what to do?
Although the number of hosting companies supporting Java is increasing,
support varies from nearly non-existent to companies that are deeply
committed to their Java support.
There are three types of hosting plans available:
* Shared hosting
* Virtual Private Server hosting
* Dedicated Server hosting
With a shared hosting plans, several web sites are hosted on the
same server, sharing the server's resources and using the same IP
address. Virtual Private Server (VPS) plans consist of a server
that is split into multiple virtual servers, each virtual server
has it's own IP address, some companies call these types of plans
Virtual Dedicated Servers.
Dedicated servers are the most expensive type of plan, each dedicated
server customer gets their own physical server, nice to have, but
prohibitively expensive for personal web sites and small operations.
At Ensode.net, we recommend that you find a hosting company that
provides Virtual Private Server (VPS) support (some hosting companies
call it Virtual Dedicated Server), since they provide a nice balance
between price and control.
A VPS server is like having your own server, usually with root
access, which gives you the freedom to install any application you
might need, including version control systems like Subversion or
CVS, WebDAV, or anything else you might need. With a VPS plan you
will most likely get your own IP address, and your server will be
not only your web server, but also your mail and database server.
VPS hosting plans tend to be somewhat more expensive than shared
hosting plans, but it is our belief that they are worth the extra
cost since they provide much more control and flexibility. If you
are a Java developer, chances are you are used to "getting
your hands dirty", and working on a server using good old Unix
Shared hosting plans tend to have "user friendly" (dumbed
down?) interfaces, which might simplify administration, but can
also severely limit what you are able to do, for example, let's
say a shared hosting company gives you 300 megabytes of disk space
to host your web site, and an additional 300 megabytes for your
email, if your web site takes 5 megabytes of space, but your email
server is getting full, there is no way to allocate more space to
store emails and reduce the allocation of web space.
In addition to leaving you unable to reallocate resources as needed,
you can also forget about installing any applications on your server.
Another disadvantage of shared hosting plans is that an IP address
is shared among several customers, which could have potential problems.
For example, if one of the customers uses their mail server for
bulk emailing, the IP address of that mail server may be banned
from several systems, in a shared hosting plan environment, this
would affect all the customers using the same server.
With few exceptions, shared hosting plans that support Java do
so through a shared JVM, which means that you have no way of starting
or stopping the JVM, and the same JVM is used to run the Java applications
of all the hosting company's clients on the server. With a VPS plan,
since you have access to your own (virtual) server, it is a given
that you get full control over the JVM.
You can use your favorite search engine to find companies that
offer VPS plans. Good luck and may your site become immensely popular.
About the Author
is a software engineer with over 10 years of experience developing
enterprise software applications. He is editor in chief of Ensode.net,
a technology web site providing information about Java, Linux and
other technology topics. He can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.